Informed Consent

Even the Order Issued to the Directors of Hospitals, Outpatients' Clinics and Other Infirmaries by the Minister for Spiritual, Educational and Medical Affairs in 1900 contained the stipulation that medical experiments on human beings were only permissible if the persons in question had given their assent to participation and this declaration had been preceded by appropriate guidance as to the adverse consequences that could potentially result from the intervention. Informed consent has since constituted a fundamental principle underlying the ethics of research. Certain aspects of this fundamental principle continue to be discussed, however, including for example the question of which conditions a person must satisfy in order to be able to give informed consent and the type of acts to which a person may or may not consent. On the historical development and theoretical foundation of informed consent cf. Faden/Beauchamp 1986.

Faden, R. R. / Beauchamp, T. L.: A History and Theory of Informed Consent. New York: Oxford University Press, 1986.

Heinrichs, B. (2010): Ethische Aspekte der Forschung mit Minderjährigen. (Ethical aspects of research with minors) In: Boos, J. / Heinrichs, B. / Spranger, T. M.: Forschung mit Minderjährigen. Series "Ethics in the life sciences – DRZE expert reports", vol. 12. Freiburg i.B.: Alber. (German)

For further information on informed consent and the right to have a say, see also:

Wiesemann, C. (2005): Ethische Probleme und rechtliche Regelung der Forschung an Kindern und Jugendlichen. In: Zeitschrift für medizinische Ethik 51, 129–138, esp. 132 and 134ff. (German)


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